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Michigan Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey began singing after being inundated with questions on Saturday as he returned from a meeting at the White House with President Donald Trump that was also attended by state House Speaker Lee Chatfield.
Videos posted online show reporters surrounding Shirkey and bombarding him with questions as he made his way out of Detroit Metro Airport. But instead of answering questions, Shirkey responded by singing verses to the Christian hymn, “He Touched Me.”
Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey did not answer questions after returning to Metro Airport from his DC meeting with President Trump — but the senator did offer reporters a few strains of a religious hymn. pic.twitter.com/rSg7P92tP3
— George Hunter (@GeorgeHunter_DN) November 21, 2020
“’Then the hand of Jesus touched me, And I am no longer the same. He touched me, Oh he touched me, And oh the joy,’” Shirkey sang, as reported by Niraj Warikoo, a Detroit Free Press staff writer.
Back from meeting Trump in DC, MI Senate Majority Leader Shirkey sings a gospel Christian song ‘He Touched Me’ at Detroit Metro Airport: “Then the hand of Jesus touched me, And I am no longer the same. He touched me, Oh he touched me, And oh the joy…” pic.twitter.com/YSatZP0UnJ
— Niraj Warikoo (@nwarikoo) November 21, 2020
Prior to their meeting, Shirkey told local media he would not simply go along with awarding Michigan’s electors to President Trump.
“That’s not going to happen,” he told Bridge Michigan, adding that under state law, electors are awarded to whoever wins the popular vote.
“We are going to follow the law and follow the process,” he said. “I do believe there’s reason to go slow and deliberate as we evaluate the allegations that have been raised.”
After meeting with the president, Shirkey and Chatfield said they hadn’t yet seen evidence of widespread vote fraud in Michigan, but that investigations were ongoing.
“The Senate and House Oversight Committees are actively engaged in a thorough review of Michigan’s elections process and we have faith in the committee process to provide greater transparency and accountability to our citizens,” they announced in a joint statement.
“We have not yet been made aware of any information that would change the outcome of the election in Michigan and as legislative leaders, we will follow the law and follow the normal process regarding Michigan’s electors, just as we have said throughout this election,” the statement continued.
Some had speculated before the meeting that Trump was somehow going to try and illegally bribe both GOP lawmakers. But a post-meeting report by CNN shot that theory down.
“A person familiar with Friday’s meeting said the session was cordial as the group explained to the President the process for certifying the election and assigning electors in their state,” CNN reported.
“Trump did not apply any overt pressure on the lawmakers to try and shift electors from Biden to himself, or to prevent the vote from being certified, the person familiar with the meeting said, but the President did appear interested in the explanation the lawmakers offered,” the report continued.
For his part, the president retweeted a statement from Chatfield with the claim, “Massive voter fraud will be shown!”
President Trump is not the only one who suspects voting irregularities in Michigan. U.S. Army veteran and GOP Senate candidate John James, who allegedly lost to Democratic incumbent Sen. Gary Peters after initially leading on Election Night, has also requested the State Board of Canvassers take an additional two weeks to audit the election results.
“I submit this request because I am interested in the truth and protecting the integrity of our elections. Sometimes the truth takes time to surface, and it’s rarely easy to get to,” James said.
In addition to the Trump campaign’s legal challenges, a conservative group, the Amistad Project of the Thomas More Society, announced Friday it planned to file lawsuits in Michigan and other swing states challenging election results.
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